We posted about the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) earlier this month. But we wanted to let you know what we’ve learned so far.

Last week we attended the DMA’s legal update in Leeds. It was an intense two and half hours and well worth the time. The big eye opener for us was the impact of the new regulations on historic B2B data lists.


Consent or legitimate interest?

You must have proof that every person in your CRM has given consent to receive the communications you’re sending. Simply taking a business card at an event and adding it to your CRM is not enough.

If you don’t have consent, the other option is to prove ‘legitimate interest’ for your communications – there needs to be a legitimate reason to contact. Can marketing emails be viewed as legitimate interest? Well it’s all a bit woolly, we expect not.

The other agreed areas for businesses to contact individuals are listed below:

  • Performance of contract
  • Compliance with a legal obligation
  • Protecting a vital interest of an individual
  • Public interest / official authority task
How do you get consent from everyone in your CRM?

Don’t email them!

Last year, Honda tried something similar and got fined by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for £13k.

Honda sent a large number of e-mails to individuals titled “would you like to hear from Honda?” They were unsure if the customer had opted into dealer or Honda news.
After a complaint was made, the Commissioner wrote to Honda. But because Honda couldn’t provide evidence that their customers consented to this type of email, they were fined. They’d sent emails to see if people wanted to receive marketing messages without the right consent, so they broke the law.

You can read an article about it here.

So what do you do?

Well there are more questions than answers at the moment. But thankfully the DMA has lots of useful information online, a GDPR checklist, webinars and workshops to book on to. You should check them out.

May 2018 might seem a long way away but there’s a lot of information to take in. And the speed this year is flying by, it’ll be here before we know it!